News Column

Spain Suspends Anti-eviction Measures

July 11, 2013

Spain's Constitutional Court on Thursday suspended the use of measures aimed at preventing banks from evicting mortgage defaulters from their homes until it makes a final ruling on the matter.

The measures had been adopted by the southern region of Andalusia, which wants to block for three years the eviction of economically vulnerable tenants from homes that have been reclaimed by banks. Ten such procedures have been launched since April.

Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy's government argued that the plans were a violation of the property rights of the banks.

The court decision suspends the plans until a final decision can be taken. No date was set for that decision to be announced.

Hundreds of thousands of Spaniards have been evicted or face eviction for unpaid mortgages, as the country battles a deep economic crisis, including a 27-per-cent unemployment rate.

The government in Madrid has already adopted some measures to protect defaulters. But associations representing defaulters say the efforts are not enough.

Others among Spain's 17 semi-autonomous regions have announced similar plans to the one in Andalusia.

The eurozone has granted Spanish banks a bailout worth about 40 billion euros (51 billion dollars). Critics say the EU and the government have been pouring money into rescuing banks while leaving their clients defenceless against evictions.

Source: Copyright 2013 dpa Deutsche Presse-Agentur GmbH